Morning Headlines: Tuesday 2nd January 2018

News Now Finland morning news headlines and weather first, every weekday at 09:00

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Stockmann Considers Landmark Building Sale

The Stockmann group says it is thinking about selling of the landmark Academic Bookstore building in Helsinki. From 1st January, there are no longer any Stockmann-owned businesses operating in the building, after the Herku Deli supermarket was taken over by S-Group. Now the Academic Bookstore, designed by Finnish architect Alvar Aalto, is listed on Stockmann’s balance sheet as an investment property, and the board has decided to look into selling it.

Capital City Transport Overhaul

Commuters in the capital city region are facing some major changes to public transport from the beginning of the year. There’s new lower fares, more emphasis on buying tickets via mobile apps, new bus numbers and a new ‘hub’ system integrating southern Espoo commuter bus routes with the Länsimetro subway. This week, passengers coming from the west into the capital will have to get off the bus at either Matinkylä or Tapiola and change to the metro if they want to continue their journey. It’s an easy transfer inside Iso Omena shopping centre, but a walk of several hundred metres in Tapiola where a new bus terminal won’t be ready for at least another year. Read more at our original story here.

Oulu Police Chase, Crash

Police in Oulu had a late night car chase which ended in a crash. Officers tried to stop a car driven by a 30-year-old man but he drove away from the scene. Police gave chase, but the man lost control of his vehicle and hit a tree. The driver and his 25-year-old female passenger were slightly injured in the crash – he is facing charges of driving under the influence of drugs, and driving without a license.

New Year Messages

Finland’s President and Prime Minister have given New Year messages to the nation. President Niinistö (NCP), who is bidding for a second term in office at the upcoming elections, recalled a year of celebrations for Finland’s 100th anniversary of independence. He noted the upswing in the economy after a “lost decade”, but warned that Finland is particularly affected by changes in the global financial situation, as the country relies so much on exports. President Niinistö also praised Finland’s entrepreneurial spirit, from young people in particular. He said that while Finland’s foreign and security situation is stable, climate change is “a real threat”. Meanwhile Prime Minister Juha Sippilä (Centre) focused his message on improvements in the economy and jobs situation. He said that work is the best way to fight social exclusion in Finland, but warned of income inequality and widening inequalities between different regions of the country.

Tuesday Morning Weather

Temperatures start out relatively mild across the whole of the country on Tuesday morning, according to the Finnish Meteorological Institute FMI. In Lapland, it will be coldest in the extreme north around -9°C, but more like -4°C in other parts of Lapland. Meanwhile in Central Finland there will be some snow this morning, turning to rain towards the eastern border. And rain forecast too in southern Finland, and the capital city region as temperatures hover around +3°C on Tuesday morning.